Okay, you may or may not know that I love Michael Mullin’s books. I’ve reviewed both The Plight and Plot of Princess Penny and 8: The Previously Untold Story of the Previously Unknown 8th Dwarf, and gushed about them. So I’m excited today to interview Michael on the blog!
Here’s a little about the books:
An original fairy tale about a princess who hires the witch from The Frog Prince to get revenge on a Mean Girl at school. What could go wrong?
My review is HERE
Written in verse, this is the previously untold story of the previously unknown 8th dwarf, named Creepy. He is banished to the basement for being different and, well, weird. Yet he plays a vital – and of course previously unknown – role in the popular tale of Snow White – whose title character is an intruder Creepy refers to as “the Maid”. (Intended for YA readers and up)
My review is Here
- Hi Michael! I loved both 8 and Princess Penny, what made you decide to write books in that style?
8 was actually written quite a few years ago. While working at Disney, I wrote two sequel stories to Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas. They were written in verse like Burton’s original picture book. (The one that inspired the film.) I met with Burton – which was pretty great! – and he approved both my stories. I left Disney soon after and wrote 8, which was meant to be my original follow-up for that same Nightmare audience. When Disney never published the Nightmare sequels, I self-published 8 and created the TaleSpins collection.
- How long have you been writing?
Forever? . . . I got serious about it my sophomore year in college when I switched majors from Economics to English. I then went on to get an MFA in Creative Writing and have worked writing in some capacity for almost 20 years now.
- Creepy is definitely my new favorite dwarf. Which of the more well known seven best fits your personality?
I’m pretty low-key, but probably not enough to qualify as Sleepy. If they focused on our morning commute together, my kids would probably say Grumpy.
- What’s the hardest part of writing for you? What’s the easiest?
The hardest part is balancing the fiction writing with the other (i.e. paying) work and life in general. Another hard part has been the self-promotion/marketing. Definitely not my thing. What’s easy for me is, surprisingly enough, coming up with rough story ideas. Crafting ideas into stories that work on all levels is a challenge, but an enjoyable one.
- Which is your favorite fairytale? Why?
That’s a tough one. I think The Frog Prince, the early Grimm version in which the transformation comes not from a kiss but from the princess throwing the frog at the wall in disgust. Seems odd behavior to reward, but the symbolic images throughout that story are rich. And I love the King’s no-nonsense attitude about making his daughter keep her promises.
- Tell us three random things about you.
I was a preschool teacher, I have 5 sisters (and a brother), and I’m a borderline geek-level fan of the Boston Bruins.
- Are you working on anything new?
Always. I am writing a full-length (non-rhyming!) YA novel called Simon, which is a contemporary retelling of Hamlet. I am also kicking around an idea for the third TaleSpins verse eBook. This one explores peer pressure in a twist on Jack & the Beanstalk.
- Anything else you would like the readers to know?
Just that I have (at long last) started a blog. It’s about the TaleSpins collection and fairy tales in general. I discuss cover art of Grimm collections, Snow White wrote a guest post in response to 8, and all reviews and interviews (like this one!) are collected there. Also, the Tim Burton/Nightmare Before Christmasstory is told in more detail on “The Backstory” page. I’m gearing up for my first contest, but I need more followers first!
Thank you so much for stopping by, Michael! I can’t wait to see what you put out next.